South Africa: More Towns Running Out of Drinking Water

analysis

As the Eastern Cape treasury last week made R120m available in drought relief for the province, several towns were running out of drinking water as more dams dried up and the province's total remaining water dropped to 50% of capacity.

On Saturday a strict warning was sent to residents in eight towns in the Eastern Cape - Aliwal North, Mount Fletcher, Lady Grey, Ugie, Barkley East, Burgersdorp and Maclear - not to drink the water supplied by the municipality without boiling it first.

In an official notice, the municipal manager for the Joe Gqabi Municipality, Zolile Williams, added that residents must add a teaspoon of bleach to every 25 litres of drinking water to make it safe.

"We can no longer guarantee the quality of the drinking water supplied by the municipality," the notice reads.

The Eastern Cape Treasury has allocated R120-million in drought relief to the province after the publication of a notice to declare a drought disaster. An increasing number of towns are running out of drinking water.

Ten out of 13 towns in the Joe Gqabi District municipality now have level three water restrictions, meaning water is only available for a few hours every day or every...

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